To examine the relationship between changes in electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) use and subsequent cigarette smoking cessation.
Using data from the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health Study (wave 1–wave 4), we analysed a study cohort of 3014 current adult cigarette smokers at wave 1 who tried to quit during the past 12 months. We categorised changes in e-cigarette use from wave 1 to wave 2 as: daily initiation, non-daily initiation, increase to daily use, increase to non-daily use, stable daily use, stable non-daily use, decrease from daily use, quit non-daily use and non-use. We estimated multivariable logistic regressions on short-term (≥1 month and <12 months) cigarette smoking cessation at wave 3 and long-term (≥12 months) cigarette smoking cessation at wave 4. We conducted sensitivity analyses using alternative study cohorts.
Among the study cohort, 2.4% initiated daily, 7.5% initiated non-daily, 1.0% increased to daily, 1.4% increased to non-daily, 1.5% maintained daily, 3.0% maintained non-daily, 2.4% decreased from daily and 3.8% quit non-daily e-cigarette use between waves 1 and 2; 7.9% and 6.9% reported short-term and long-term cigarette smoking cessation. 15.1% of short-term and 16.3% of long-term cigarette quitters used e-cigarettes. Compared with non-users, smokers who initiated daily, increased to daily or quit non-daily e-cigarette use between waves 1 and 2 had higher odds of short-term cigarette smoking cessation at wave 3. These results are robust to different study cohort specifications.
The findings suggest a complex relationship between changes in e-cigarette use and subsequent cigarette smoking cessation.